A Complete Timeline Of The Allegations Against Colleen Ballinger

Two side-by-side photos of Colleen Bassinger. In the photo on the left she is standing and smiling, on the right is a screenshot from her ukulele apology video.

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It’s beginning to feel a lot like 2014 — Jennifer Lawrence is on a press tour, Margot Robbie is in our newsfeeds, and Colleen Ballinger (you might remember her as her alter ego Miranda Sings) is trending on YouTube. 

It’s all much more disturbing this time around, though: Ballinger’s trending thanks to allegations of inappropriate conduct with underage fans. Meanwhile, we’ve just heard reports that she’s deeply, deeply racist.

— Content warning: This article includes discussions of grooming, inappropriate behaviour towards minors, and racist language. — 

There’s a lot going on, so we’ve put together a timeline for easy reading. Here we go…

Early June 2023: Former Fans Allege That Ballinger Groomed Them As Kids 

As a children’s host, Ballinger regularly was interacting with kids — and last month a bunch of them talked to Rolling Stone alleging that she has been engaging inappropriately with minors for a long time. 

As reported by The Huffington Post, several former fans have shared screenshots of their alleged correspondence with the now 36-year-old YouTuber, where she looks to be engaging in inappropriate conversations. She even had a private group chat on Twitter called “Colleeny’s Weenies” where she chatted regularly to a group of underage fans. 

One of the members of that group, Adam McIntyre, reported that Bassinger asked him if he was a virgin and questioned him about his “favourite position”. McIntyre, who was 14 or 15 at the time, put together a YouTube video detailing the alleged exchanges. 

McIntyre first went public with the allegations in 2020, when he apparently heard that Ballinger had been badmouthing him. He responded by way of a video titled “Colleen Ballinger Stop Lying”, where he initially accused the YouTuber of grooming him, and even exploring him for free labour. At the time, Rolling Stone reports the then teenager was doxxed, threatened, and called slurs by Ballinger’s fans. 

According to Rolling Stone, McIntyre — who is now 20 — is understandably upset that it’s taken three years for his complaints to be taken seriously. 

July 28, 2023: Ballinger Responds To The Allegations In Song 

Given all of this, Ballinger decided the best course of action would be to respond by playing the ukulele in a 10-minute video titled “hi.”. In it, she says in song that her PR team advised her not to respond to the allegations — but hey, they never said she couldn’t sing! We only wish that they had. 

The song includes talk of a “toxic gossip train” and how “rumours look like facts if you don’t mind the gaps”. Ballinger also mentions that she used to overshare in DMs to her fans, and that she’s since changed her behaviour. I couldn’t tell you what she said after that though, because I had to turn off my computer for self-care. 

Watch it below: 

By this point, our girl and her ukulele were well and truly going viral, but for all the wrong reasons: the video reportedly amassed 3.7 million views in 24 hours, and the overall response to the video was one of bemused horror. 

McIntyre in particular wrote on Twitter that the video — a flippant response to some very serious allegations — revealed exactly the type of “evil” person she is. 

June 29, 2023: Colleen’s Ex-Husband Expresses Support For Victims 

Joshua David Evans, Ballinger’s ex-husband, has also weighed in on the allegations, writing in support of those who say that Ballinger exploited them as children. 

“Anyone feeling hurt & gaslit right now, my message to you is this: Your experiences were real,” he wrote on Twitter. “The proof is there. Your trauma should be taken seriously. The proof is there. Your anger is justified. The proof is there. You deserve better. Take your power back. Sending you love.” 

He added: “This behavior was my reality anytime I spoke up & disagreed with her actions & rhetoric during 2009-2016. I was gaslit too. I was made to feel like I was always the problem. Any pain I felt was an inconvenience and was belittled. Every ounce of what you’re feeling, I understand.” 

Evans also posted the following tile to his Instagram account, presumably in support of those speaking out:


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Joshua David Evans (@joshuadtown)

July 1, 2023: A Former Employee Alleges Racist Behaviour 

Wait, there’s more: a woman who worked as a writer’s assistant for Ballinger’s Netflix series Haters Back Off in 2016 entered the fray over the weekend with yet more allegations. A young Black woman working her very first job out of uni, writer April Korto Quioh recalled Ballinger wanting to limit the number of non-white extras in the show out of concerns they would be “distracting”. She also alleges that the YouTuber transformed an Asian grocery store into a “normal” one for the show, noting that Ballinger expressed disgust at the “Asian shit” in the shop. 

She also reckons that Ballinger seemed unbothered by the Netflix show’s all-white cast. “I sat patiently as the Powers That Be expressed concern that the entire main cast for the show was white and silently prayed that since someone with some actual say had spoken up, things might change,” Quioh said. “And I took note, yet again, as Colleen assured them that they had only casted the best person for each role and that it wasn’t her fault that all of those people ended up being white.” (A familiar story.) 

Screenshots that suggest Ballinger tried to joke about an actor’s skin colour was an especially shocking aspect of Quioh’s account, as was her memory of seeing an unwavering cruelty in the YouTube star that she noticed was on full display in her ukulele video. 

We don’t yet know if Ballinger will respond to these later allegations, but either way the writing is the wall — whether it’s James Charles, David Dobrik, or now, Colleen Ballinger, we’re seeing that the cult of the famous YouTuber has cultivated unsafe environments for children by cultivating power imbalances that are ripe for exploitation. 

YouTubers may not be as relevant as they used to be, but as YouTube fandoms of the 2010s grow up, we’ll inevitably be hearing many stories like these in the years to come. What consequences will these creators face, and how can we ensure the online safety of children going forward? The answers to these questions are still unclear. 

Reena Gupta is Junkee’s Deputy Editor. She tweets at @purpletank